The Prescotts became our Ambassador family after former Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott’s daughter-in-law, Roz, was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in 2008.
They have supported our political work, including the launch of the IBD Standards at the House of Lords and have raised brilliant awareness and funds from quiz show appearances.
Before my diagnosis, I was always on the go, happy and determined and ambitious. After I was diagnosed with Colitis, everything changed. I knew nothing about the disease and it changed my life overnight. The symptoms can be debilitating, painful, embarrassing and even frustrating, but my advice is you must fight it. Once you understand it, you can take control and eventually you will get back to some sort of normality. I found speaking to Crohn's and Colitis UK really helped me through a very difficult time.
A week after giving birth to my daughter, Ava Grace, I was admitted to hospital for emergency surgery to remove my bowel, which resulted in me having to have an ileostomy bag. I was naturally upset and in great shock at the time, but my consultant uttered the words, 'no colon, no colitis' and that sounded like a lifeline to me.
I eventually opted to have a reversal rather than keep the stoma bag and today I feel like me again. IBD can be very hard to understand, but my family, medical team and the Crohn's and Colitis UK team really helped me, both mentally and physically. Colitis can be an embarrassing disease but please know, you're not alone and it's true - it is good to talk.